Red Rose Thorn

What Have I Done!

Brie's POV

I was with my parents and Amber in the park as we were walking to a local theater to see "Shakespeare in the Park." It's been a tradition that we get to see "Shakespeare in the Park" once a year and I was so glad Amber's parents allowed her to come with us.

"Oh man, I so can't wait! I wonder if we'll see 'Romeo and Juliet'… Oh, or maybe we'll see 'Much Ado about Nothing.' I've always wanted to see that play," said Amber.

I laughed at my best friend's excitement. This is just what I wanted; spending time with my family and my best friend. Not worrying about Megan or the musical; just having fun with the people I love.

"Come on girls, the show is about to start," I heard my dad call out.

My mom smiled at us as she said to us, "We have to hurry, if we don't want to be late and get good seats."

Amber ran ahead of me to catch up with my parents. I was about to run too, when the wind picked up and my hat blew off of my head. I turned around and ran after my hat. I had to get it back because it was one of my favorite hat's my grandma gave me for my birthday.

When I finally ran over and picked up my hat, I noticed that the wind had started to pick up and the bright blue sky had turned to black. I held onto my hat and ran over to where Amber and my parents were. I did not want to get rained on since it looked like a storm was coming up.

As I ran to where they were, I immediately stopped and screamed. I was looking at a horrible site. Right in front of me were my parents, hanging dead from a tree with a rope around their necks and Amber, at the base of the tree, laying dead covered up in blood.

No, they can't be dead! This is not real!

As I backed away in complete shock, tears covering my cheeks, I felt a loss of breath as I felt the body of another behind me. A man's chest. Before I could look take a glance at him, he held me tightly to him, as I felt his lips on my ear.

My heart pumped in fear as he whispered, "You belong to me."

I opened my eyes and gasped for air. Realization hit me that it was only a nightmare; Amber and my parents were not dead. I was still shaking like I could still see them dying again.

I took a deep breath and looked around me. I thought I was going to see that I was in my bedroom, but that wasn't the case. My eyes widen when I saw I was really in the swan room in the Phantom of the Opera. So everything that happened was real and I wasn't dreaming it.

I heard a smoothing melody and I turned to see it was the monkey music box that was playing. I recognized the song "Masquerade." I looked around to see the swan bed was surrounded by a lacey black curtain. I pulled the cord to see the curtain raise up. When the music box stopped playing, I heard some beautiful music coming outside of the room. I knew the phantom was playing his organ.

I was about to walk out of the room when a thought came to my mind. This is the part when Christine rips off Erik's mask. I don't want to make that same mistake she did… but will it change everything if I don't pull the mask off? And what about that nightmare; I'm still creped out about it. Was it a warning or was it just a stupid nightmare? What the hell am I going to do?

I took a deep breath and slowly walked out of the swan room. Looking around me, I saw the magnificent lair of the Phantom's. I turned to my right to see Erik playing a beautiful melody on the organ. The music felt like it was soothing me, which helped since I was still scared from the nightmare. I cleared my throat to alert Erik that I was behind him.

My heart started to beat really fast when the music came to a stop. Erik slowly turned his head and stared right into my eyes.

"Good morning Brieanna," Erik said sweetly.

I looked down at my feet as I said softly, "Good morning Er- good morning sir."

I can't believe I almost called him by his first name. Thank God however he didn't hear my slip up. I was still shaken from the nightmare and the fact that I was talking to THE Phantom of the Opera. I still could not look up at him to see his face.

"I hope you had a pleasant sleep," I heard him say.

"Hmm… oh yes… pleasant sleep," I mumbled as I continued to look down at my feet.

There was a slight pause before Erik asked me, "Is everything alright?"

"Yes, of course."

I didn't even realize that Erik stood up and walked up to me. My eyes widen when I saw a pair of black shoes right in front of me and a black gloved hand softly grasped my chine and lifted my face up. I stared right into his eyes only to see concern and not murderous.

"Brieanna, please tell me what's wrong," he asked me tenderly.

I sighed as I said to him, "It's nothing; I just had a nightmare last night. Please don't worry about it."

Erik smiled at me before saying, "Very well, just remember that nothing will harm you; I promise you that."

I beamed up at him. "Thank you. What was that song you were playing?"

Erik looked at his music sheet that was on the organ and answered, "It's just a melody that came to me."

"It's very beautiful," I said softly.

Erik looked back at me and smiled as a way to say thank you. We didn't say anything; we just looked into each other's eyes. I stood right there, staring up at his half-masked face. I have to keep to the plot... I have to do this; I don't want to, but I have to take the mask off… but I couldn't just rip it off like Christine usually did. He was so kind, assuring me that I was safe. But that nightmare still haunts me. I raised my slightly shaking hands to his face and rested him on the lower halves of his cheeks. His eyes met mine, looking slightly confused as I did so; he wasn't used to being touched. He slowly closed his eyes when he felt my hands on his checks. My left thumb slid to the edge of the mask and my breath hitched. I had to...

Curving my thumb inward, I began to pull away the mask from the side of his face as slowly as I could. As I was about to pull the mask fully away, Erik's eyes popped wide open with shock and horror. I gasped as I suddenly was pushed to the ground still holding onto the mask. I realized that I might have made the biggest mistake of my life. Fear suddenly crept up to me when I looked at Erik. He was steaming mad as he covered his side of his face with his hand.

"Damn you! You little prying Pandora! You little demon - is this what you wanted to see," he cried out as he marched over and ripped the canvas covered mirror to see his reflection.

I couldn't see it but I could tell he was looking at his monstrous face. I didn't know why I couldn't see his face but I knew it was just like it in the movie. I was shaking in fear as my nightmare kept on replaying inside my head. I want to go home; I want to be with my parents and Amber. I felt like I had just woken up the beast inside of Erik. He covered his face again with his hand and turned to look at me.

"Curse you! You little lying Delilah! You little viper - now you cannot ever be free" He cried out.

I closed my eyes as tears slowly slide down my red checks. I heard one of the candle stands crashing down to the floor. I knew Erik threw the candle stand down with frustration.

"Damn you ... Curse you ..."

I slowly opened my eyes when I heard the next line Erik was singing. He slowly walked to the mannequin that looked like me as he softly touched it like the mannequin was real.

"Stranger than you dreamt it - can you even dare to look or bear to think of me: this loathsome gargoyle, who burns in bell, but secretly yearns for heaven, secretly... secretly..."

Erik gradually turned to look at me to see I was still holding his mask. He walked up to me and knelt in front of me and looked right into my eyes.

"But, Brieanna... Fear can turn to love - you'll learn to see, to find the man behind the monster: this... repulsive carcass, who seems a beast, but secretly dreams of beauty, secretly... secretly..." he sang softly. "Oh, Brieanna…"

I looked at the mask and I slowly gave it back to him. As he grabbed the mask, I looked down with shame of what I did. I really messed up big time. I opened my mouth and said the first thing that came to my head.

"I'm so sorry."

Erik looked back at me in shock and whispered, "What did you say?"

My eyes looked right into his as I said, "I shouldn't have taken the mask from you. I was so stupid and I wasn't thinking straight. You were so kind to me and I really messed up. I hope you can forgive me?"

Erik didn't say anything as he continued to stare at me. I was getting nervous because I didn't know what he was thinking. Will he forgive me or will his not and hate me?

Erik held his hand out for me as he said in a low voice, "Come, we must return. Those two fools who run my theatre will be missing you."

I nodded my head as I took his hand and he led me down to the gondola. We didn't say anything to each other as he rowed the gondola up the water. I still felt guilty for what I have done. I knew I needed to follow the plot, but is it wrong that I didn't want to make the same mistake Christine did? I lowered my head when I realized I am following what Christine did and I might have made it worse. As we finally reached the Prima Donna Dressing Room, he opened the mirror and allowed me to pass him. Before he could leave, I stopped him.

"What is your name," I asked him.

Erik looked at me in shock like this is the first time anyone asked him that question. It would be easier to call him by his first name instead of calling him Phantom or Angel of Music.

He looked right back at me as he said, "Erik… My name is Erik."

He didn't even wait for a reply or a reaction from me as he slowly closed the mirror door leaving me alone in the Prima Donna room.

I smiled softly as I whispered in the dark, "Erik."

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